In this guest blog, The Institute of Fundraising share how to engage your regular donors and the public on Giving Tuesday.

Giving Tuesday has become something of a household name in the UK in the last few years. Starting off in the US, the movement has grown internationally. It holds the world record for the most amount of money donated online in 24 hours, raising over £50 million globally last year through PayPal alone.

Any charity can become a partner of the campaign and get involved with Giving Tuesday on 27 November 2018. It’s a great opportunity for any charities to build on the momentum, ride the Twitter trending wave, and inspire people to give to your cause. But rather than ask for more donations, has your charity thought of other ways to engage the public and your regular donors?

At the Institute of Fundraising we’ve come up with a quick list of ideas to help improve your donor experience on Giving Tuesday.

What can your charity do on the day?

Make it personal

Simply saying thank you to your donors is an effective way of letting them know that you value their support, but it has the potential to do a lot more in the relationship between donor and charity. Have you thought of ways to make the message really connect with the donor?

Take for example Innovista, the community faith charity, who ran a fantastic campaign last year to celebrate reaching a landmark level of donations and enabling them to train 1,242 community leaders. To say thank you, Innovista created personalised one-take videos on smartphones for 88 of their most loyal supporters; from big trusts to £10 a month donors. Despite not asking for any response, 20 supporters replied. One wrote: “This is brilliant and brought tears to my eyes!” Another wrote: “You guys at Innovista are just the best at making your supporters feel valued.”

By putting their donors at the centre of their work and making them feel appreciated, Innovista created even stronger bonds with their existing supporters.

Charities can use Giving Tuesday to celebrate their key achievements together with their donors and potentially inspire them to give even more in the future.

Here are some tips for a great thank you:

  • Address the supporter by their name
  • Reference the campaign they donated to
  • Explain what their funds will be used for
  • Sign off using a member of staff’s name
  • And don’t include another appeal

Show them that their support really makes a difference

In the case of ActionAid UK, they used the end of one of their international projects to connect donors with sponsored children. The ActionAid team took individual photos of the children holding a board that featured a thank you and goodbye message. Rather than focus on the sadness of the project ending, the focus was on the impact the supporter made during that time – a touching gesture towards the long-term supporters of the charity.

We can take lessons from this to take our donors on a journey – share our achievements, but also show them what we still need to accomplish.

Create a brand new experience for Giving Tuesday supporters

Giving Tuesday might only last 24 hours, but its impact can be felt long after.

Your work on Giving Tuesday will attract new people to your cause and it’s not uncommon for people to donate multiple times during the day to different charities. But just because someone has donated to you or followed you on social media it does not mean they know enough about your work. Make them feel part of the charity and reaffirm that they made a great choice when they donated by planning a supporter experience just for those donors attracted by Giving Tuesday.

For more inspiration on how to craft an excellent journey, take a look at the Donor Experience’s full recommendations.

There are loads of inspiring ideas out there and the ones outlined aren’t compulsory, but hopefully will give you some starters to help you get a great donor experience in place ahead of Giving Tuesday – and throughout the year.

About IoF

The Institute of Fundraising (IoF) is the professional membership body for UK fundraising. To find out more about their work championing the fundraising community and their membership base of 600 organisational members and over 6,000 individual members.

Image: Innovista: Winners of Best Donor Experience Award at the National Fundraising Awards 2018